Monday, March 29, 2010

Children take flying fox to school

Sometimes you have to be amazed at the awesomeness of life. There's a little village down in Columbia where the only access to the outside world -- including the kids' schools -- is down these ziplines (the Aussies call a zipline a "flying fox"). The kids ride down them on pulleys and control their speed with a wooden stick. And they carry their younger siblings with them in sacks. First off, I HAVE GOT TO GET ME ONE OF THESE!!! My second thought is that I have to write a story about this, probably just using the concept of a girl zipping about on a flying fox as a kickoff point. Some of the comments on this story, particularly at the Daily Mail, are a bit boneheaded. It doesn't look safe? Do these pampered first-worlders understand how people who live in places like this risk their lives all of the time just to live? Sure it's dangerous, but look how calm and confident this girl is. Do children really benefit from having everything given to them wrapped in plastic? Who is going to face life better when she grows up, Daisy Mora or your local mall rat with her cell phone and iPod and vivid warning signs everywhere?

Dave Eggers had a few things to say about these fearful attitudes of our advanced world in a nice little novel he recently wrote...

Eff school buses; we could cut truancy down to near zero if we let kids go to school this way every day.

Best view of the pictures here, and as usual, Boing Boing's commenters are a bit less worried about the danger of it all.


UPDATE: Sometimes the ideas just wash right over you and it's hard to keep them from sweeping you away with them. I have the story idea now. Boy, do I ever!

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